External App: Ed Discussions

The Poorvu Center will be piloting Ed Discussions for one year, available to all academic courses in Canvas from January 1, 2021 - December 31, 2021.  


Ed Discussion is a threaded discussion platform. It supports document and image upload, math equations, runnable code, embedded video, and image annotation. Posts can be private or anonymous, and student responses can be ‘endorsed’ by instructors. 

Ed Discussion features include:

  • The ability to create categories to organize the discussion board (e.g. Lectures, Precepts, Lab, aAssignments).
  • The ability to create filters to help organize the discussion board (Unread, Starred,  Answered, Unanswered).
  • A content editor which allows users to easily format text, type equations with LaTeX, write code, upload documents, annotate images etc.
  • The ability to create Tread Templates, which allows instructors to pre-define what a student should include in their post.
  • The option to set discussion threads to private, i.e. available to course staff only.
  • The option to configure the discussions to allow anonymous posts, opening options for peer and instructor feedback.
  • Links to all the courses in which you have used Ed are immediately available in the Ed interface allowing you to easily switch to other discussions.
  • Integrated notifications that allow you to send announcements to the entire class or to be notified when someone responds to one of your posts.
  • Commonly used replies may be saved within Ed and reused. This is helpful when offering recurring feedback on student posts.

Please note:  Ed Discussion is not integrated with Canvas's grade book. It does have an analytics dashboard, however, which allows you to download a CSV file of student activity.  

Ed Discussions Demonstration

Additional Guides

For more help with Ed Discussions, or the pilot, please email vendor support  at support@edstem.org or  askpoorvucenter@yale.edu.